Archie Andrews and his Riverdale friends heard stories of what's lurking in Greendale across the Sweetwater River. It was the place where Cheryl Blossom ventured with her brother Jason, resulting in his tragic death, and it's the theme of Farmer McGinty's unique Tripy experience. As he once told Jughead Jones about the CW drama, "You never know [what you might see] on the way to Greendale." Netflix Chilling Adventures of Sabrina pulls back the veil to bubble a world of witchcraft beneath the surface and the half witch, half mortal teenager in his midst. Episode EW 's Binge Recap.
: "October Country"
The 10-episode series directed by Riverdale showrunner Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa is not a fairly formal split-off of Riverdale , It's clear that both exist in the same world with all the references, but the gap between Netflix and CW makes crossing difficult – not impossible, but difficult. Instead, we should take CAOS as Riverdale -like version of Aguirre-Sacasa's original comic Chilling Adventures of Sabrina which was a gothic horror turn on the peach Archie and Melissa Joan Harts sitcom-y Sabrina, the Teenage Witch .
CAOS The Show, makes for Sabrina what Riverdale for Archie – it tends to darker and more complex concepts to reveal the juicy stories in the middle.
As a half-witch, half-mortal, this new Sabrina (played by Mad Men 's Kiernan Shipka) must constantly reconcile with dueling powers. She enjoys her normal life analyzing horror films with friend Harvey in the local Greendale Cinema and fighting against the patriarchy with beasts Roz and Susie (Lachlan Watson). Sabrina's generally cheerful teen life is contrasted by the darkness of her witch life. As a young sorceress approaching her sixteenth birthday, she must prepare for her Dark Baptism, a ritual transition ritual in which a young witch with her compass enters the forest and her name in the Book of the Beast (aka The Book of the Dark Lords), aka Satan's book). This will give her immortality, make sure her powers do not go away and give her access to the Academy of the Invisible Arts (like Hogwarts when Harry Potter studied necromancy and demonic summon instead of magic spells). The downside, of course, is that she cedes her name to the devil and completely renounces her mortal life, two things that are not good for Sabrina.
Witches have always done that, so she makes the necessary preparations with guidance from her witchy aunts Hilda (Lucy Davis) and Zelda (Miranda Otto). One is blond, the other is a redhead. One is warm, the other is cold. One sympathizes with Sabrina's mortal attachments, the other wants her to cut the ties. They exist as visual representations of the polar forces that influence Sabrina, but they are also their own endlessly entertaining gothic troupe – like Punch and Judy (a reference that Zelda will later perform), if you could see the blood of Judy Scoop the head. Sabrina's cousin Ambrose (Chance Perdomo), who is under house arrest by the Witch Council for a past offense, acts as midfield. He likes to interfere in matters, but also knows the pain of cutting himself off from the mortal world.
Shipka nails the look of the teenage witch, but her performance is oversold. She does a good job that evokes some of the more emotional, intimate scenes (the sweetness between her and Harvey and the comfort between her and Susie). But her delivery is not quite preserved. The dialogue feels more and more as if he were reciting dialogue lines rather than really dealing with the theatricality of the material.
Just as significant as the character relationships around Sabrina is the atmosphere. The comic based on the distinctive style of the artist Robert Hack, and the series has its own twist. The opening credits are an animated homage to his art that draws images directly from his comics. In the episodes themselves, the fish-glass effect seems to be a popular technique for unbalancing the viewer and blurring the boundaries between what is real and magic.
Much of this effect is used for scenes in the woods and ones with Mrs. Wardwell, Sabrina's favorite teacher at Baxter High. The innocent woman tries to help a seemingly traumatized young girl who appears on the roadside. The girl turns out to be Madame Satan, maid of the devil. Then she kills and cruelly grabs on Mrs. Wardwell's body, a scene that sets the tone for the audience – this is not a bunch Bednobs & Broomsticks . Supported by Stoli, her crows cry (a goblin who takes on an animal form to serve a witch better), she is on a mission from hell to get Sabrina to join the Church of Night (the religious institution of witches) and to hug her dark side. 19659007] Then come the Weird Sisters, three alike-looking student witches who deal with a half-murderous "Mutt" and visit the Academy of the Invisible Arts. Wisdom (Tati Gabrielle), Agatha (Adeline Rudolph) and Dorcas (Abigail Cowen) appear in front of Sabrina to make a Bloodsong while she is in the woods to summon a familiar one. It's not something Sabrina's aunt Hilda can not fix, but the trio do more harm in pointing out that Sabrina's parents were killed by witches and not in an airplane crash, as she'd learned. This mystery stays in Sabrina's head as she takes a milk bath to wash the hex, has visions of following her parents into the forest and meeting two babies on an altar – one normal and the other with spread hooves instead of feet.  There are many references to classic horror movies during the series, another comic book orientation; Aguirre-Sacasa's books contained a number of variations that honored titles such as Rosemary & # 39; s Baby and The Exorcist . The first is The Night of the Living Dead the Sabrina and her school friends at Dr. Ing. Cerberus & # 39; discuss books (Cerberus is the many-headed dog of Hades who guarded the gates of the underworld) Greek mythology, and Greendale is a pathway from the mortal world into the realm of the supernatural). As Susie points out, zombies in the movie were a metaphor from the Cold War for the collapse of the nuclear family, and CAOS has a similar function.
The series plays with the image of the woman in the '60s and' 70s, a time of the Suzy Homemaker, but then it twists this image with delightful results. Ms. Wardwell's obsessed form channels the fuller hair and elegant, vintage dresses of this era, but she is a literal ogre. Harvey always seems like an industrial-age coal miner because of his family business working in the Greendale mines, but he's not poisoned by toxic masculinity. He preserves a lost age of chivalry and romance while Sabrina can lead.
Sabrina uses witchcraft, a symbol of the anti-nuclear family, as a weapon against "puritan masculinity" and restrictive gender norms. Principal Hawthorne (Bronson Pinchot) does not appear when Susie (non-binary) is physically attacked and molested by homophobic jocks, so the young witch takes things into her own hands. After Mrs. Wardwell has planted the idea in her mind, Sabrina orders Ambrose to hex a horde of spiders Hawthorne, just to "traumatize" him a little, so that she can start a WICCA, a school club, to protect Susie and all women at Baxter High. (Spiders are Hilda's confidants, which is an indication of the comics when Hilda transforms into a giant tarantula to scare a neighborhood girl harassing Sabrina.)
There are many moving parts when it comes to it creating a new world of at least half-familiar Riverdale fans …
Sabrina tries to tell Harvey that she's a witch to see how he'll react, but magically takes her back if she does not like it. Parents bring the body of their recently killed son (who could very well be a witch) to the morgue, suggesting that Ambrose may be the work of witch hunters. Sabrina discovers her as a goblin sneaks into her room and assumes the shape of a black cat (Salem!). Zelda warns against choosing a wild family member to serve a witch, but Sabrina says it's more about a mutual partnership than about bondage. And with her concern about the increasing dark baptism and refusal of aunts to postpone her, Ambrose suggests searching for a Malum malice, an apple that gives knowledge to female witches. Ms. Wardwell gets wind of it, and as she fears that Sabrina might learn something to lead her away from the nocturnal path, she uses a voodoo witch to send her a scarecrow in the maze of hay, which prevents Malum malice. Unlike Salem, who is familiar to Hart fans (pun intended), Salem does not speak (he communicates with Sabrina), but he can return to his more threatening goblin form and tear things apart – like scarecrow – [Forthemostpart CAOS does well to keep these pieces entertaining and engaging, while at the same time beginning a more multi-faceted coming-of-age story about a teenager trying to make his own way
Sabrina finally chooses a path when she bites into the Malum Malice and sees a horrible vision: the branches of the tree now keep several witches at their necks from the branches and out of their rotting trunk a half-human bursts out half-creature. She believes that this is the future she expects when she signs The Beast's Book, and goes home to inform her aunts of her decision – only to find that they are already waiting for her.
Hilda, Zelda and Ambrose are gathered by the fireplace to introduce Sabrina Pater Blackwood (Richard Coyle), High Priest of the Church of the Night and Satan's representative on earth. He came at the request of Hilda and Zelda to address Sabrina's concerns about undergoing the Dark Baptism. The refusal to do so "can not be," he says.
So begins the ongoing mystery surrounding the young Sabrina: Why does the Church of the Night want Sabrina to sign the book of the devil so much that they send her highest official to convince her? What really happened to Sabrina's parents? What does it really mean to walk the path of the night?
Grade: B +
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